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Ricochet Spying Brand Strength

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Hits Market With Episodic, Bond-like Theme in KB&P Campaign
SAN FRANCISCO--Take a bit of James Bond and a dose of '60s fashion and you have an unlikely campaign for a new technology service.
Eight TV spots and a radio and print campaign are part of a $28 million push for Ricochet, a high-speed Internet access service for mobile computers from Metricom. The ads, from Kirshenbaum Bond & Partners West here, kick off this week in Atlanta and San Diego, and will roll out to Los Angeles, San Francisco, Dallas and numerous Eastern cities.
Agency creatives said the campaign grew out of conversations with business professionals who said they relish the idea of working away from the office.
"This campaign takes a detailed product demo--the safest and usually dullest thing you can do on television--and makes it wildly entertaining," said Nigel Carr, agency GM and managing partner.
In the new spots, a sultry young woman named Gloria Rico and an older man, Chet Stinson, move through high-stakes business meetings a la The Spy Who Loved Me. In one, they drive a sleek blue vintage Cobra to a meeting with a Japanese power broker. The deal is in jeopardy, but Glorio uses Ricochet to go online and learns that their Asian contact was educated in Sweden. She tells him in Swedish that she knows a good Swedish place where they can eat, thereby saving the day.
The tag is, "High-speed mobile access. Work away."
"We created an entire world for Rico and Chet," said creative director Jennifer Solow. "It's not unlike the episodic world of The Avengers where the viewer can get involved with the characters."